Time to Upgrade? Trends in Procurement Software

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Software Advice has just released is overview key trends in procurement systems for 2011. Those sourcing from China may consider implementing some of these processes in their of businesses.

First, with rising costs elsewhere in the supply chain, managers are increasingly turning to automated procurement systems over manpower. Most active in the implementation of procurement software are mid-sized businesses, those with revenues between USD 100 and 750 million, which are turning to cloud software. This unique form of data management operates without being grounded to a server but instead on an extended network of users.

Cloud and other types of software are allowing procurement specialists to network outside of their own organisations, another trend noted in the Software Advice report. Greater connectivity within the industry has increased the viability of reverse auctions, where suppliers can collaborate for heightened purchasing power. 

The main advantage of an upgraded procurement system is enhanced information flows. For example, through order history tracking and via the data obtained from an expanded network, down times in purchasing can be identified, at which point prices are cheaper. Furthermore, greater information swaps promote collaboration between a business' procurement and finance divisions, improving the budgeting process. Two applications cited in the report for this purpose are purchase-to-pay and supplier performance management applications.

The article also states a trend toward automation, not just for the purchasing cycle, but for the endorsement of contracts--a move that could further expedite the procurement process. However, the arrangement of this type of system seems a long way off with most Chinese suppliers.

For more details about these trends and others, see the full report hereThe homepage URL is here.

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